Monday, September 23, 2013

Chocolate Krantz Cake - Oh Ottolenghi! IHCC

After 6 months of cooking with featured chef Yotam Ottolenghi, it's time for I Heart Cooking Clubs to say goodbye. I joined in a little late but I had been cooking from his books for over a year and was already a fan. It was great fun to make the recipes I'd had bookmarked for a long time but hadn't yet tried and those I'd only recently noticed.
For his send off, I baked a cake, and not just any cake, but the Chocolate Krantz Cake from the book Jerusalem which he describes as "the sort of thing everyone hurls themselves at". I concur! I've had many a chocolate babka and made a few myself, but never one like this: layers of tender brioche swirled through with veins of rich chocolate and crunchy pecan filling.
As with most yeast bread, it takes some time to make but it's mostly inactive time. The brioche dough recipe is quite standard and requires an overnight, or at least several hours fermentation. Then there's the shaping, proofing and baking of the loaves. You may be tempted at this point to just dive in (they smell sooo good!) and skip the sugar syrup.... don't. For one thing, it's definitely needed if you use bittersweet chocolate (72% cacao) and dark cocoa powder in the filling like I did, which made it very intensely chocolate-y and not very sweet, but it also transforms the texture of the loaves from bread-like to that of a moist cake.
Chocolate Krantz Cake
It was delicious!

Though IHCC may be saying farewell to Yotam Ottolenghi, I certainly won't be - there are too many recipes still to explore. So, goodbye for now Yotam, I'll see you again soon in my kitchen!

For the next 6 months, IHCC will be cooking with Donna Hay, renowned Australian cookbook author, magazine editor and food stylist whose food philosophy is fast, fresh and simple. I'm looking forward to this new cooking adventure!


  1. Oh dear, this looks *really* good!

  2. Hi Zosia,
    This looks good, very good! I can imagine the aroma while it is in the oven!
    I will definitely see Ottolenghi again too, in my kitchen!
    Looking forward for our trip to Australia! :)

  3. Beautiful loaf, Zosia. I can almost smell the chocolate and butter from here :) I've only baked Babka once (and that was also the first time I ate it), and fell in love. This one looks like a good one to try.

  4. I have to ask how on Earth did a chocoholic like me overlook this recipe in Jerusalem? Especially since there are pecans in there too. So awesome, Zosia!

  5. Oh my ... this is a serious choco-fix! The spiralling of the chocolate in the loaves is just gorgeous! Showstopper!

  6. Gorgeous! That is the most incredible cake/bread--and the fact that it is so full of chocolatey goodness makes it all the better. ;-) I too am going to keep cooking along with Ottolenghi. ;-)

  7. I'm so happy I got to know you through Ottolenghi's recipes. I know that I would definitely "hurl" myself at a slice of this gorgeous cake if given the chance. Those final loaves looks so shiny and marbled. They are a real feast for the eyes!

    Hope to see you around for Donna Hay :)


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